Cody Green threw for two TDs on 14-of-17 attempts and Trey Watts went over the century mark with 142 yards on 27 carries.
Ja’Terian Douglas got Tulsa up 7-0 with a three-yard run with 11:33 left in the first quarter.
After a UTEP field goal, Green then connected with Keevan Lucas and Thomas Roberson for TDs covering 24 and 35, respectively. That put TU (2-4 overall, 1-1 in Conference USA) up 21-3 and it would be up 21-6 at halftime.
“It’s big for us. We needed a conference win,” Tulsa Head Coach Bill Blankenship said. “We have no non-conference games left so we have to crawl out of that hole one game at a time. We go into a bye week that will really help us. Hopefully we can get a little healed up and get ready for Tulane. It is very important to get that first one.”
Roberson caught five receptions for 105 yards, his first 100-plus yard game of his career.
The Miners (1-5, 0-3) threatened a rally that started with a 100-yard kickoff return to start the second half. They cut Tulsa’s lead to 27-20 with a 71-yard TD screen pass from Jordan Leslie to Jamielle Showers to late in the third quarter.
Green answered for TU with a two-yard run with under 11 minutes left in the game. Tulsa would hang on to win.
Three defenders enforced 10 or more tackles. Defensive back Michael Mudoh 12, linebackers Trent Miller and Shawn Jackson had 11 and 10 respectively. Jackson also added an interception. Will Barrow also made a pick.
Tulsa has next weekend off before playing on the road against a surprising Tulane team on Oct. 26.